Australian-headquartered Harvest Technology Group Limited (ASX: HTG) (Harvest) has successfully developed a bespoke solution for an oil and gas exploration company, enabling access to real-time data from one of the most remote places on the planet – the sea floor.
The next-generation system uses acoustic transfer technology to securely transmit data 24/7 from a monitoring structure on the sea floor to a “smart buoy” at the surface. The smart buoy acts as a modem to communicate data back onshore via mobile or satellite link – at a fraction of the bandwidth typically required, alleviating the challenge of relying on retrospective data to make critical operational decisions.
“Harvest’s Nodestream™ protocol allows customers to receive a live video feed of their subsea assets from anywhere via any mobile device with Internet access,” says Head of Harvest’s Solution Architecture, Jimmy Dean. “Another important feature is the ability to alert onshore headquarters when there is a major change in sensor readings, so customers can respond quickly in emergencies or monitor until intervention is required,” he explains.
The technology is self-powered so it can operate for several years without the need for in-person inspection and maintenance, removing people from unsafe environments, reducing carbon emissions and eliminating the high costs associated with traditional subsea monitoring.
“Leading operators are adopting technology to gain a competitive edge,” says Harvest’s Product Design and Delivery Lead, Jason King. “Shipping, ports, oil and gas exploration, renewable energy, offshore wind farms, aquaculture, and environmental researchers know you need the best data to help make decisions, and the best data isn’t yesterday’s data, it’s live-streamed data.”
Harvest’s research and development (R&D) is conducted in-house by its 20 developers. Many have first-hand experience working in remote offshore operations, away from loved ones and onshore expertise. This drives them to solve challenges when operating remotely.
Last year, Harvest invested nearly $5 million in R&D, plus $1 million to purpose-build its innovation hub in Perth’s Technology Park.